Re: Re: Antiwar Movement & Civil Rights Movement

dh111 (
Wed, 17 Apr 1996 13:04:58 -0400

In response to Paula Friedman - I don't think it is a matter of posing civil
rgihts versus anit-war movements either. But I do think that the more
fundemental change and threat to the status quo of social relationships came
from the civil rights example. Where would the anti-war movement have been
if not for the returnees from Freedom Summer? More recent events reflect
the divide that remains: in 1991 the sentiment of the majoritywas support or
acquiesence to the Gulf War but turmoil unfolded around the Clarence Thomas
- Anita Hill confrontation. Which one still resonates with the vast majority?

It has been pointed out to me recently that, despite the "success" of
anti-war movement (which I hardily support), a lingering suspicion of
anti-war activists, including Bill Clinton, is indicative of a feeling among
many that opposition to war, no matter how unpopular the conflict in
question, is traitorous. Civil rights I think has a deeper significance
because to support equality and human rights is the highest aspiration of
professed patriots, therefore they must contend with it on some level or un
the risk of being dubbed racist. Whereas circumscribed war, with minimal US
casualties, is acceptable to the majority, being blatantly racist in the
style of Wallace and Maddox and Thurmond of old is unacceptable because of
the civil rights movment. Venal politicians still use race, but legacy of
Selma and Montegomery, as well as the Moritorium and May Day - and probably
more so - shapes the debate. (dh111)